Dear Atheist Nexus,

I am writing to ask if you will take our survey. The survey looks at the perceptions and attitudes of both affiliated and unaffiliated nonbelievers, concerning the functions and activities of secular, freethought, humanist, and atheist organizations, and also the conduct of individuals and groups in the broader atheist movement/community in general.

It is our goal with this project to generate a portrait of both member and nonmember nonbelievers in America; specifically, we want to understand the following:

(1.) What nonbelievers think secular groups should offer in terms of activities and functions (What do they think secular groups should be doing?)
(2.) What do secular affiliates think are the reasons that nonaffiliates do not join such groups?
(3.) What reasons do nonaffiliates themselves give for not joining secular groups that exist for them?
(4.) What general approach should secular individuals and groups take towards religion, religious beliefs, and religious people?

Our hope is that you will also be willing to distribute the survey link to your friends and acquaintances who are nonbelievers but who are not members of secular, freethought, humanist, or atheist organizations; this particular population is of great interest to scholars studying atheism, partly because they are hard to reach and/or identify, and partly because we know even less about them than more visible or affiliated atheists (this is, in turn, due to the first reason).

The survey link is below, and only those who have this specific link can access it;

About the researchers:

Joseph Langston is an independent researcher, having received his MA in 2012 from the University of Colorado in Colorado Springs (

Dr. Ryan Cragun is an Associate Professor of Sociology at the University of Tampa ( He is a member of the Atheist Research Collaborative (

Joseph Hammer is a doctoral candidate in counseling psychology at Iowa State University ( He is also a member of the Atheist Research Collaborative.

If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, please direct them to Joseph Langston at

Very sincerely,

Ryan Cragun
Sociology Department
University of Tampa

Joseph Hammer
Department of Psychology
Iowa State University

Joseph Langston
Independent Researcher

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Interesting survey.  There could have been a few more choices regarding some of the questions, particularly the "radio-button" questions, but overall, pretty good.

I chose the answers that said that groups specifically organized around freethought, atheism, etc. were pointless and self-contradictory.

The last question, about compatibility of science and religion, needed one more option:

"The evidence shows that people with religious beliefs can and do produce excellent scientific results, therefore, their religious beliefs are compatible with what they believe about science."

The question of whether science and religion are compatible is illogical in its formulation. Science is an activity and religion is based on a belief. For example, automobiles exist because some people followed the rigorous standards of science and engineering to develop the theories about the universe on which the science of automobiles is based and some other people applied those theories to manipulating physical reality to produce the parts and functionality of automobiles. Most of the people in that chain of events were people who held some kind of religious belief. We know this is true because most people hold some kind of religious belief, and there is no evidence that there is a disproportionate number of non-religious people working in the automobile industry compared to any other industry or engineering or technology profession.

So, for all of those religionists who work on designing and manufacturing automobiles, the science involved is compatible with their religious views. In fact, most religionists accept the vast majority of scientific claims as true. The only way the could do this is if they felt that their religious views were compatible with what they learned from the process of scientific discovery, because it is >their< religious views which are the source of their judgement about whether they want to accept or reject the claims of science.

I'm going to start a separate topic over in Philosophy to open up this discussion.

took the survey.  although it doesn't show you how you score, it appears i'm likely a very moderate atheist.  strange, considering i've considered it a central part of who i am for the past 25 years.

Not available to anybody outside of the US - pity!

Yeah I agree. I would have liked to have at least seen the questions they asked, even if they discard my answers.


I took the survey but found it to be more opinionated than helpful. It may help them understand us, but I'm more today towards ideas of myself being a militant atheist.

I cannot be certain, but it kind of seems to me that this is another theist ploy, but for what purpose I do not know beyond speculation. I haven't taken the survey, so I cannot be sure of this. What about all of you who have taken it, what do you think ?

I'm beginnig to agree with you, Tony. Look carefully at ME's first sentence on his reply. That would seem to go along with a theist viewpoint.


I am certain that ME is a theist. Mindy said she reported him, so I'm wondering why he is still a member here. It's starting to look to me like the war against free thought and atheism has begun in earnest.

You may be right, Tony. I'm not sure if he has signed in or done posts since everyone accused him of being a theist. A little more time will tell.

"I chose the answers that said that groups specifically organized around freethought, atheism, etc. were pointless and self-contradictory."

That above quote is his from an answer in this very blog. He sure sounds like a theist to me.

His reference to "lockstep atheists" on his profile isn't encouraging, either.  I can't help noticing, though, that we haven't heard anything from him in the last 24 hours.  Curiouser and curiouser...

I'm also unable to participate as I'm outside of the US, but even if I could, I would not. What is there to understand about non believers? We just don't believe in the fantastic fairy tails of any of the scriptures, plain and simple!




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